Arbitration & Mediation

Arbitration and mediation are forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR).  Parties will use these methods to resolve their disputes as an alternative to going to court.  Such methods typically are less costly than going to trial.  Attorneys at Ballard & Littlefield, LLP, have many years of experience representing business clients in arbitration and mediation proceedings, often in matters involving employment and business litigation. 

Arbitration

In an arbitration proceeding, a neutral third party, often a licensed attorney or judge, reviews the issues and facts of the case with the parties and issues a decision.  The arbitration can be non-binding or binding.  Non-binding arbitration allows the parties to evaluate the merits of their case through an informal hearing that follows arbitration procedures leading to a decision that the parties are free to accept or reject.  On the other hand, in binding arbitration, an arbitrator or panel of arbitrators will issue a decision which the parties must honor although it is subject to appeal to a court for extremely limited review.

Arbitration is a way of resolving a case that is more expedient and less costly than a court proceeding.  Some parties are required to arbitrate their cases because of contractual clauses, mandating arbitration in the event of a dispute.   Some cases, however, involve such complex, difficult issues that they have to be litigated in the courtroom.   

Mediation

Mediation is another method of ADR, but it differs from arbitration in that it is informal, confidential, and the neutral third party, called a mediator, does not issue a decision.  Instead, during mediations, the parties take turns privately discussing their interests and concerns with the mediator.  In these confidential discussions the mediator also coveys communications from the opposing party. Ultimately, through this back and forth process, the mediator narrows the issues,  facilitating a resolution of  the dispute. If the parties are unable to resolve their case through mediation, then the parties may have to consider taking the case to trial or arbitration.

Parties can choose to resolve their case through mediation, or a judge can order mediation for the parties, as an alternative to trial. 

Having an attorney experienced with arbitrations and mediations is essential to help protect your rights and interests in these proceedings.  The attorneys of Ballard & Littlefield, LLP are very experienced, having handled numerous arbitrations and mediations.  If you own a business and need legal representation in an arbitration or mediation, contact the law firm of Ballard & Littlefield, LLP today for a consultation.


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